Monday, July 8, 2013

TOTD - Hollywood: Making Heroes Look Stupid

"I'm a paladin hero deputy sheriff. I know guns. That's why I told
that other idiot to release the safety on his Glock."
*Not what Rick really said.
I finally gave in and recently added a show to my TV watching time. "The Walking Dead" is a good show, with great characters and tense realism intertwined through its gory premise. It also illustrates well why those of us who prep for apocalyptic scenarios do so, and inadvertently provides some tips to our crowd by showing some things that can go wrong. Whether it's zombies or some crazy monkey flu, pandemic scenarios are nothing to scoff at, and this show brings that forward to the audience in spades.

Despite all this action and emotion packed goodness, it does have some problems. I won't go into all of them, just the one that's pertinent to this site: gun knowledge. Face it, there are LOTS of guns on the show, both seen and used. Being also a sound man, I find myself constantly annoyed at the fake and excessive sounds made by the guns being handled. Someone one-hand draws a gun from a holster ... it makes a slide racking sound. Clinks, slides, snaps, and pings abound every time someone touches a gun at all. However, this is not the worst offense.

I almost stopped watching a few minutes into the pilot, because I became so annoyed at the blatant lack of gun knowledge, or apathy of the director/producer/writer to allow ignorance to be presented as fact. The hero, Rick, tells a bumbling deputy, "Be sure you've got a round in the chamber and the safety is off." Okay, nothing wrong with that, except, oh wait ... that guy has a Glock! There is no manual safety to turn off. And despite the fact that hero Rick should have known this, they made it worse by showing the bumbling deputy mime releasing a safety after he chambered a round! They even added a "click" noise as he passed his thumb over the slide release, which being the only lever on the pistol is what he had to use to pretend he was doing something with a safety.

I mean, c'mon! If that line and action are critical to your plot enough to leave it in - turns out later it kind of came back around - then dang it, get a different prop gun for the actor that actually has a manual safety on it! Don't suck all the zombie preppers out of the action - the crowd who knows a Glock has no manual safety - and ask them to believe something they know is wrong. That's just lazy, and supremely annoying!

2 comments:

  1. Producer 1: You know this dialog in our pilot has reference to a safety on the weapon. We should really be using a 1911 like that original treatment you wrote 15 years ago had.
    Producer 2: But the 1911 simply doesn't read like a modern law-enforcement firearm. Audiences know and have seen a lot of cop shows and know what a modern handgun looks like.
    Producer 1: If they're so sophisticated, won't they know that the Glocks have no manual safeties?
    Producer 2: No. Tommy Lee Jones doesn't mention it in The Fugitive, so we're all good.
    Producer 1: Well somebody's going to notice.
    Producer 2: Who do you think that will be?
    Producer 1: A gun blogger out of Alabama.
    Producer 2: Will he blog about it during the season?
    Producer 1: No, it won't be until after the 2nd season is wrapped.
    Producer 2: The decision is made then. Have the talent fake that there's a manual safety along the operator left side of the weapon. We have a lot of zombies to kill.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is obviously precisely what happened. Dang Tommy Lee Jones not mentioning manual safeties when barking at Robert Downey Jr.!

    ReplyDelete

Keep it clean and courteous people. Lively is good, mean spirited is bad. Thanks for participating!

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